Tuesday, September 12, 2006
This is the view of the Pacific Ocean from our Marshallese Classroom at College of the Marshall Islands (Pictured are Anita and I). Can you believe how stunning the view is?!? I'm not going to write much, just wanted to share with you a "top 20 list" that I put together this last week. You might find it amusing:
TOP 20 THINGS ABOUT LIFE IN THE MARSHALL ISLANDS THAT TAKE A BIT OF GETTING USED TO:
20. No such thing as “Cold Water Wash” @ the laundry…the only cold water you’ll find here comes in a small bottle and costs $1.25.
19. “Shoreline” is actually the name of a specific place, as well as a good description of the whole country.
18. The combination of hot rain on the tin roof and noise from the air conditioner makes it impossible to hear anything during class at CMI.
17. Need kitchen utensils? ACE hardware has the best selection.
16. “Learn Japanese” TV shows are all voiced-over in Japanese so you can no longer hear the original English that the characters are speaking…so much for learning Japanese!
15. One FDIC Bank on the entire island. Hours: M-F 10am-3pm. Closed: mornings, evenings, weekends, and holidays. No direct deposit. How on earth are working people supposed to make a deposit?
14. Where else in the world can you watch live NFL Monday Night Football games on Tuesday at Noon? (We're about 16-19 hours ahead of people in North America, 12 hours ahead of most people in Europe, and 4 hours ahead of most of Asia).
13. Mountains & hills are a foreign concept: the highest elevation in the country is 22 feet above sea level: the Long Island bridge. Some government and office buildings are slightly taller.
12. Majuro Environmental Protection Agency’s main focus: Convince people to not throw trash on the street or in the lagoon.
11. Adorable small children hanging out the windows of cars during rush hour, “high fiving” me as I ride by them on bike. (yeah, biking to work is faster than driving)
10.$4.20 per gallon for gasoline is considered reasonable!
9. No such thing as “too many people” in a taxi…no seat belts either.
8. Checking expiration dates on everything you buy at the grocery store. Paying $8 for a box of cereal before its expiration date and $2 for a box of cereal thereafter.
7. The ice bucket at the hotel is not for ice: it’s for “flushing” the toilet by dumping tap water into the bowl when the salt water refuses to fill in the tank.
6. Two seasons: Hot & Rainy, and Hot & Kind-of Rainy.
5. Going “Out of Town” for the weekend just doesn’t exist. If you do try to go “Out of Town” it will cost you at least $1000 on Continental Airlines.
4. Hearing Bob Marley’s “Don’t Worry” translated into Marshallese on the radio (very weird!)
3. The post office in the States says airmail takes 4-10 days. Expect it to arrive in 4-10 weeks! Surface mail: 4-10 months! There’s also no postal insurance available because it’s guaranteed to be broken upon arrival.
2. 4-inch geckos and 3-inch cockroaches on walls.
1. Riding a bike in a Mu-mu. I haven’t tried it yet, but it looks like fun!